Tag Archives: Kindi

Florentine Farewell to Kindi for Sophie

A new chapter in Sophie’s life is about to begin.  Today she made an impromptu visit to Kindi, after a happy visit to her new school. She said farewell, gave her much loved teachers cards and home-made Florentines and a little gift for the Kindergarten.


She says she will miss them all very much, particularly Ollie who helped Sophie gain confidence in being independent from her family in those early weeks at Kindi.  Ollie has the gift of humour and the ability to connect with children in a genuine, heart felt way.  Sophie loved her teacher Helen too, for all her wonderful creativity in music and crafts.  Sophie discovered a passion for sewing through Helen. Sophie’s teacher Anna always had a smile and a cheery greeting, sharing her love of Rascal the Kindi rabbit with Sophie.

It’s a sad time as one chapter closes.  A time of reflection and also celebration at how much she’s gained in her confidence with social interactions with her peers and being independent. She is ready for the next chapter and today felt excited at what is ahead. Dan took the day off work so he could join her at school visit this morning, which she loved.

She came home full of chatter about the morning and how they made stars, cards and did drawings, which she gave to new friends.  She also talked enthusiastically about playing ‘ball tag’ in fitness.  She is such an active, creative girl with so much passion and enthusiasm for life.

We wish her well on this next chapter in her life and hold the precious memories of her time at Kindi close to our hearts too.

We’ll miss the scenic journey along the coast road to Kindi each morning, racing the ferry on the way, and seeing Orcas one very special morning.  And I’ll miss sharing lunch with Sophie in the lovely cafes in Island Bay and playing at the beach and the playground afterwards on sun-kissed days. Alice will miss her sister (and her yoga workouts!) and the house will seem very quiet for six hour’s on a school day (thank goodness we have the long summer holidays to enjoy before she starts!).

We’ll never forget…

  • The amazing day Sophie cycled all the way there, with her Daddy for support, on her 2-wheel bike.
  • The fun she had at the Kindi fairs and Dan’s fantastic effort on the sausage sizzle (and all those onions we had to peel and slice!).
  • The fun of the music the Kindi always played and how welcoming of the children’s tastes… Sophie took along her favourite ‘Awesome CD’, which Dan put together for her – with a dose of Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’, the Alvin and the Chipmunk’s version of ‘You Spin Me Round’, ‘Who Let the Dogs Out’, ‘Kung Fu Fighting’, ‘Axel F’, ‘Tractor Tipping’ (from Cars Movie), ‘Mighty Wings’ (from Top Gun) and ‘Eye of the Tiger’.
  • The first friendships she made and play-dates she enjoyed.
  • The fun she had discovering the wood-work bench and her creative side with a sewing maching.
  • Swinging on the ropes from the trees like a little monkey.
  • Weekends looking after Rascal the Rabbit (and the book we wrote about his escapades!).
  • The extra special fun days at Kindi of visits from Zippity Zoo, story tellers, musicians and Zappo the Magician.
  • The boxes of artwork she created in the year and a half she was there!

‘Angst’ in transition to school

Last night my four, going on five, year old daughter, Sophie told me, in her own words, ‘I feel too much pain going to Kindi as I am so sad to be saying goodbye.  I don’t want to have the goodbye as it will just make me sadder.  I have never felt like this.  It hurts.’

She was in floods of tears.

Sophie at the woodwork bench in Kindi

She has really loved her teachers at Kindi and they have touched her heart deeply. She is absolutely gutted to be saying goodbye and she can’t get her head around the intense feelings she is experiencing.

She would like us to just pop in with a gift and cards for the Kindi, but doesn’t want to attend for the rest of the term.  That is fine with me and I totally understand.  I don’t see the point in pushing her for 7 days. They do a little ‘graduation ceremony’ on a child’s last day of Kindi, but she says it will just make her very sad.

It’s akin to an adult being made redundant from a job they love. Most wouldn’t want a big fuss to be made on their leaving.

Her Kindi teachers each have unique strengths that they’ve shared with her. She has benefited from their humour, wisdom, creativity and guidance. At times she has felt lost and struggled to find ‘her place’. She is a very bright young girl who finds older children much more socially at her level than her own peers. She questions everything and is disappointed when people don’t have the time to answer her: But her Kindi teachers have worked so hard, as they do with all the children in their care, to do their very best in the circumstances.

I know she will find the school system difficult in this respect. I read here that pre-school children ask as many as 100 questions a day. It asserts that by the time they reach middle school they stop asking questions and this coincides with the time their motivation and interest plummet.

She is very confused about school.  Her teacher doesn’t start till Term 1 (so she won’t meet her till she starts and she knows that her teacher is only staying for one term before going overseas).  Though she has an older sister at the same school she just hasn’t got her heart there – yet, and I’m sad at the thought of the ‘light’ and ‘passion’ dipping from her eyes. The same thing happened with Charlotte and over the school holidays, weekends and in the evenings we see the ‘light’ return. Sometimes Charlotte needs ‘mental health’ days to give her breathing space for creative thought. She is such a driven, natural self-learner with a passion to discover the world. She is frequently frustrated at the pace of learning in school and the amount of time she has to spend ‘sitting well’.

Oh the angst! I read on-line all the time that I am not alone in feeling the ‘system’ is not working. There are brilliant teachers, working hard to make great schools, but they are confined within a system. One that I cannot fathom how will work heading into the future, with increasingly bright and inquisitive minds growing faster than ever before.

I am going to cease rambling now. I have a sore throat and am catching the colds that the girls have been sharing around this week. I am going to look forward to celebrating Sophie’s 5th Birthday with a wonderful party in little over a week and make sure I am a strong advocate for her future. If she isn’t happy, we shall fix the problem – which might mean a huge change for all of us and shifting to a newer way of learning.

Children in Crisis; Drill & Kill by Sandra Gunn
The Public School Nightmare – Why fix a system designed to destroy individual thought? by John Taylor Gatto;
and a post by Sandra Gunn on ‘The Public School Nightmare’


This post was inspired by the word ‘Angsty’ – a writing prompt in Mama Kat’s Writer’s Workshop.

Sophie’s ‘Rascal Rabbit’ book

Last week, on a rainy day, Sophie and I sat down to write a story about Rascal rabbit, from Sophie’s Kindi. He’s come to stay a few times and he certainly lives up to his name. We used ‘Snapfish‘ and Sophie is delighted with her own special book. We’re going to give a copy to the Kindi too. We loved making the book and have lots of ideas for more books. Charlotte says she’d like to make one about ‘monsters’ and create her own creatures out of plasticine, take photographs of them and write a story to go with the illustrations. I look forward to seeing that!

Rascal thumps his stuff

He came, he went, he came again. Rascal rabbit is living up to his name. After causing us one sleepless night back in January, when he went missing for 24 hour’s and was later found in a neighbour’s backyard, he has done it again!

Rascal rabbit

This time he went missing for not one, but two night’s – the dirty stop out!

Sunday morning he went missing and so Mother’s Day (NZ) was spent searching the neighbourhood, but there wasn’t a bob tail in sight.

Monday morning I had the unfortunate job of informing Kindi and getting some flyers printed off to do a letter-box drop.

Tuesday, around tea time, I get a text from Frances to say, ‘Tell Sophie there’s a surprise waiting for her when she gets home.’

I had taken Sophie to ballet, whilst Charlotte was at a play-date. Frances was kindly mowing the lawns when a neighbour came round with the good news that Rascal was hopping about on our drive-way. He then spent a good half hour trying to catch Rascal, collecting a few scratches for his efforts.

The story, it seems, is that Rascal had taken himself off for a play-date with the rabbit he’d met on his last escapade. We’re just waiting to find out if there are any baby bunnies as a result…

Other Rascal posts:

Rascal rabbit let loose in the garden
Rascal returns!
Rascal the rabbit comes to stay

One week till due date

Where has this week gone?

We’re back in the old routines of school and kindi and slowly adjusting. The girls have mostly been good for me in the morning; so I haven’t had too many drill sergeant major moments, but I do feel a little on edge with a rapid change in hormones. I’ve been really clumsy this week; what with smashing a glass in my hand and getting a nasty cut on my finger; and racing past a chair tonight and getting an awful scrape on my lower belly and then bursting into tears with worry that I may have harmed baby.

On Monday morning I was all set to drive the girls to school and kindi, but couldn’t find the car keys. For a moment I thought Dad had flown back to England with them in his pocket! Mum ended up walking Charli up to school and I called the Kindi to say Sophie wouldn’t be in (her Kindi is an hour’s walk from our house and I’m so not up to that right now!). By the time Mum returned (which was fast – she must have set a new speed record) I had found the key… oops! Mum said it was a clever ploy to keep her fit and I texted Dad to let him know I’d found it (he was in transit in LA and had said, ‘It’s definitely not in my hand luggage as it’s been searched twice by security already!).

Braxton Hicks contractions have been increasing and I’m finding it really uncomfortable to drive. Baby’s head is so low down and I keep getting quite sharp, shooting pains. The cervix is definitely softening and my body preparing for birthing baby. I never had ‘pre-signs’ with either of the girls. With both their births the first contraction I had was the commencement of labour. I had no ‘show’, no water’s breaking prior to labour and no Braxton Hicks. I never experienced the head engaging prior to labour either. This time round everything is feeling very different and I am really beginning to wonder when everything will kick in for real. I have been feeling very spaced out for the past few days and premenstrual. On the one hand I am feeling positive about all the pre-signs I am getting; hoping that they will mean a smooth and relatively short labour. On the other hand I feel on constant tender hooks as to when baby will arrive and can’t quite relax.

Mum and I have been really busy with preparations too. All the baby gear is sorted, but there’s always so many other little things to do, as well as regular house-work. We’re all organized with some little surprises to keep the girls amused when I eventually disappear to have baby. I’ve written them a little card each to say what amazing big sister’s they are going to be. I’ve fitted in a hair cut (probably won’t have one for at least six month’s now!). And we’re all sorted for Dan’s Birthday tomorrow – just got a cake to bake and a Birthday tea to prepare with the girls for when he gets home from work.

I had another acupuncture appointment and will have my last one next week (which will be induction treatment). Whilst I had my appointment I let Mum loose in town and was getting a little worried when she was a few minutes late meeting up. Dan has now sorted her out with a spare mobile phone we had hanging around so I can keep tabs on her ;)

Mum and I have been really cherishing our quiet morning’s together and enjoying morning tea at various cafes between doing the food shopping, returning library books and doing the house-work. Of course we’re missing Dad and thinking of him all the time too.

The girls have been really good for us, though naturally there’s been some adjusting as they fall back into routines. They played inseparably for most of the holidays and Sophie, in particular, is feeling the change the most. She really misses her big sister when she’s at school. Charli is fine and loving her new class. She is enjoying seeing all her friends again and can’t get enough of them – asking for play-dates after school, which I’m reluctant to commit to just yet as I cherish the time with her after school and so does Sophie! We have walked up to the school to pick her up a couple of times this week and enjoyed taking our time meandering home. The girls got a chance to have a whizz on the school’s new flying foxes this week, which they were totally thrilled about.

Sophie started swim classes on Tuesday afternoon (whilst Charli is at school) and totally loves them. She is already very confident in water, but is now in need of lessons to get swimming proper. Charli’s lessons are on a Saturday, which will make it easy for me when baby is here. We’re skipping dancing this term, as I’m not up to doing too much running around after school, but have promised Charli a return to classes in term 2.

Not much time to rest up and take it easy this time round. It’s all go till the final countdown – whenever that might be! The girls are very excited and cuddle up to my belly and talk to baby. They find it strange not being able to countdown to a particular day and every night say, ‘Baby might come tonight?’. Well, baby is definitely going to come within the next couple of week’s – that is for certain – and I’m just hoping we’re not kept waiting too long!

Here’s the final belly shot…

Photo on 2010-02-11 at 22.43 #2

I always wonder if I’ll ever return to normal at this stage of pregnancy, but looking back on photos of when I was pregnant with Charli and Sophie and then seeing me normal afterwards helps to reassure me!

First day, first term, new year

I was having ‘going back to school’ dreams this week, apprehensive of how the girls would react after nearly seven week’s of freedom. But I needn’t have worried. They were super good for me getting out the door and bounded into school and kindi with great excitement. Charli ran on ahead and into her new classroom to dump her bag and head out to play. The school playground was electric with excitement and it’s just as well there’s only two day’s this week for the children to settle in – as they were totally manic! Charli’s new teacher seems fabulous and she has some new faces in her class, which will be nice for her. She also has a few good friends from last year and seems elated to be back with them. She’s so young in her class, with most of her classmates almost a good half a year to a year older than her, but she thrives in the company of older children and is academically on the right level for her ability.


Sophie too was excited to be back at Kindi and within two minutes of passing through the gates she was saying, ‘Okay, you can go now Mummy!’. When I went to pick her up, with Grandma and Granddad in tow, she was standing proudly on the verandah ringing the cow bell to signal ‘mat time’, telling us, ‘I’ve been the best helper so I get to ring the bell!’.


School pick-up was a happy affair too. Glorious sunshine made for a jovial atmosphere and it was hard to get the children away from the school grounds.

We headed to Scorching Bay for a celebratory ice-cream and play in the fabulous summer sun. The girls would have happily stayed for hours, but by 5.30pm we thought we should be wise and head home to wind them down for a good sleep before tomorrow. Charli had so much fun inventing a ‘shooter’ with a straw and string she found – shooting out seaweed pellets. She then dug a trench for the incoming tide so she could watch a leaf float round in the stream. Sophie found a scooper on the beach (from a washing detergent packet) and used it to make mini-sandcastles, counting them as she went (she can now add and subtract, as well as problem solve, all numbers up to 15 and count to 40 with ease – she is constantly asking for maths questions!). We explored the rock pools and found lots of baby hermit crabs and fish. Both the girls loved climbing and swinging on the climbing frame. Grandma showed us her artistic flair with a beautiful horse sand drawing. We could have amused ourselves for hours and hours… ah, good ‘ole simple fun.

Scorching Bay 040210

Here’s hoping the positivity continues! It was certainly a delight to see them so happy to return and the house was very, very quiet this morning. Mum, Dad and I headed off to pick up the baby car-seat and then had a lovely morning tea at ‘The Bach’ at Island Bay.

Only two week’s till due date! Feeling very excited and just can’t wait to get going and meet this baby! We’re now decided on a boy’s name, but have a list of girl’s names as long as my arm. If baby is a girl we are hoping she offers us some divine inspiration on her arrival! The other night, we had a fun evening on Facebook with friends suggesting a number of wonderful girl’s names…

Aimee Rose Lee
Ava Rose Lee
Anya Rose Lee (yes we really like Rose as a middle name – and if it’s a Valentine baby girl then it would be a most befitting name)
Other suggestions….
Kate Lee
Jessica Lee
Jasmine Lee
Ruby Lee

If baby is a boy then we love Archie David Lee (Archie for my Grandfather, David for my Dad and of course Dan’s family is represented in the surname).

Ah well, girls sound asleep and I should really head that way too. My energy levels are still super good and I find it impossible to sit down (except to write blog posts!). Charli is enjoying having two pianists in the house to personally play her melodies as she drifts off to sleep (my Mum and I have been entertaining the troops on the piano).

We’re looking forward to more sunshine over the weekend and are trying not to think about Granddad having to fly home on Sunday evening :( – alas work beckons for him.